Most of the time, jazz concerts as a whole are rather predictable. When artists and musicians display their craft, on-stage charisma is sometimes lacking. In the case of Peter White and Mindi Abair, the chemistry between the two was "off the hook." In addition, their group of Christmas elves consisting of keyboardist/vocalist David Sparkman, bassist Donald Patterson and drummer Lester Peoples were just as delightful. Collectively, they helped to shore up an otherwise stellar performance by Peter and Mindi. Watching them perform together was attuned to seeing a matched set of complimentary talent working as one. Although jazz was the highlight of the evening, the infusion of Christmas carols and cheer was quite refreshing.
In recent months, Mindi Abair has been lighting up the jazz charts with hits such as "Flirt" and "Lucy's." In the process her popularity has become so infectious as an artist, she has managed to acquire a great deal of crossover appeal. With the personality of a rock musician, Mindi has the ability to draw audiences into her performances in a manner that demands their undivided attention. Peter White's performance on the other hand is always delightful. His philosophy throughout his career has been to play for the benefit of his audiences. He is the master performer and always gives his all on stage. He too performed songs from his many albums which included "Promenade", Bueno Funk", "Autumn Day" and numerous others he has recorded along the way. Peter and and Mindi also performed a medley of Christmas carols as well. Mindi even wrote a song entitled "All I Want for Christmas", which provided a bluesy and sexy appeal to hers and Peter's array of standards. For Houston's jazz starved connoisseurs, this concert was one of the premier events of the year.
Having seen Mindi Abair perform for the very first time, I have a new found appreciation for her talent. Although her recordings are enjoyable, watching her perform in a live setting is even more revealing. This was a special concert filled with jazz in a variety of flavors. At no time in recent memory has the chemistry between two artists been so invigorating. Hopefully, Peter and Mindi will return to Houston in the not to distant future for another exciting evening of entertainment. Together, the two of them have proven that jazz concerts do not have to be predictable and boring. The price of a ticket should always be worth the purchase. Kudos to "KHJZ 95.7 The Wave" for providing Houston aficionados with another fine night of entertainment.